Marty Casey, owner of House of  Optical, performs the honors during a  ribbon-cutting ceremony at the business’s new location Nov. 29.

Marty Casey, owner of House of Optical, performs the honors during a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the business’s new location Nov. 29.

Photo by Deb Jacques


Longtime Clawson optical business moves closer to downtown

By: Sarah Wojcik | Royal Oak Review | Published December 3, 2018

 House of Optical recently moved to a new location five blocks to the east at 250 E. 14 Mile Road, just east of Main Street.

House of Optical recently moved to a new location five blocks to the east at 250 E. 14 Mile Road, just east of Main Street.

Photo by Deb Jacques

 Raymond Admin, general manager of House of Optical, assists customers Paul and Leah Foltyn, of Bloomfield Hills, during a ribbon cutting ceremony at the business’s new location Nov. 29. The building formerly housed the Foltyns’ business, Discount Fabric Outlet.

Raymond Admin, general manager of House of Optical, assists customers Paul and Leah Foltyn, of Bloomfield Hills, during a ribbon cutting ceremony at the business’s new location Nov. 29. The building formerly housed the Foltyns’ business, Discount Fabric Outlet.

Photo by Deb Jacques

CLAWSON — After 20 years at its location in a strip mall, House of Optical recently opened a new location five blocks to the east at 250 E. 14 Mile Road, just east of Main Street.

With the landlord opting to not renew another 10-year lease, owner Marty Casey said he wished to stay close to retain loyal customers, so he purchased the freestanding building with telltale white columns.

His stepfather originally opened the business approximately 40 years ago, and Casey said he wished to move the independently owned company to a more central location in the downtown development area.

“We have tons of loyal customers and a lot of repeat customers,” he said. “We have our own in-store lab, so we can do one-hour service on glasses.”

Along with the move, Casey said House of Optical hired another optometrist to bring its number of eye doctors up to three, as well as additional support staff, for a total of approximately 25 employees.

Cindy Veersma, manager of House of Optical, said the business “totally gutted” and renovated the inside of the new location to house the modern showroom.

“We have a large selection of designer frames — one of the largest around,” Casey said. “We carry just about every name — Bebe, Coach, Prada, Dolce & Gabbana, Oakley, Ray-Bans. And we don’t mark ours up as much, so we’re a little less money to come here.”

He said the new facility is larger and also includes additional parking.

The old building was known for a mural of bespectacled celebrities. Artist Lisa Ludeman,  of Royal Oak, was a customer and offered to touch it up.

“It was peeling and almost gone, and I said, ‘This is a landmark. You can’t let it just die,’” Ludeman said. “I think Marty called me a year ago and said we will be moving and we need the mural redone.”

Ludeman said she worked with staff to narrow a list of eyeglass-wearing characters and celebrities to include in the new mural, which consists of seven 5-foot sections, and is titled “Wall of Frame.” She painted it with acrylics and sealed it with an exterior UV clear coat.

Joan Horton, chair of the Clawson Downtown Development Authority, said she and other members of the community were “very happy to see it come back, because the (mural) down there, everybody knows that mural.”

She said she thought the move into the new building was “terrific.”

“The business looks great. It’s lit up so nicely, and at night, you see activity,” Horton said. “They’ve been really dedicated to being a good business partner in the downtown. They’ve already been involved in events, and we’re looking forward to partnering on other things.”